C'garh allows multiplexes and cinema halls to reopen in Raipur

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Raipur, Nov 11 (PTI) Multiplexes and cinema halls have been allowed to reopen in areas outside COVID-19 containment zones in Raipur district of Chhattisgarh, an official said on Wednesday.

Raipur is the latest addition to the list of the districts where screening of films has been allowed by the state government.

Screening of films is expected to start by Saturday, the Diwali day, or Sunday in Raipur, a cinema hall owner said.

In an order, Raipur collector S Bharathi Dasan has detailed a Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) for exhibiting films in cinema halls and multiplexes to check the spread of the coronavirus infection, the public relations department official said.

'The occupancy of the cinema halls and multiplexes shall not be more than 50% of their total seating capacity and the seating arrangement inside the premises should be made in such a way that adequate physical distancing of at least 6 feet is maintained between two individuals,' he said.

Temperature setting of air conditioning (AC) devices should be in the range of 24-30 degree Celsius inside cinema halls, the official said.

However, in case of unavailability of the AC system, necessary arrangements should be made for cross ventilation, he added.

Availability of hand sanitisers in the touch-free mode at the entry and exit points as well as in common areas within the premises of multiplexes and cinema halls should be ensured, he said.

Thermal scanning and sanitization of hands of visitors and staff should be done at entry points, the order said.

Only asymptomatic individuals should be allowed to enter the premises, he said, adding that everyone should wear face masks and maintain social distancing in waiting areas, common areas and inside halls.

Earlier, reopening of cinema halls and multiplexes was allowed in several districts, including Raigarh, Janjgir-Champa and Bastar.

However, the similar permission is yet to be granted in districts like Rajnandgaon and Korba, officials said.

Welcoming the decision of Raipur district administration, a Central Circuit Cine Association (CCCA) member here said the exhibitors have already made all preparations to comply with the safety protocols.

'In some districts, the local administration had given a permission for reopening cinema halls and multiplexes, but they are yet to resume operations as the distribution of films mainly takes place from the state capital Raipur and the business was closed here,' Labhansh Tiwari, a member of CCCA, told PTI.

In Raipur, screening of films in cinema halls and multiplexes will be started by Saturday or Sunday, said Tiwari who runs Shyam Cinema Talkies in the city. PTI TKP NSK NSK